Background: Mexican American workers are vulnerable to noise-induced hearing loss, the most common occupational disease in the United States. Objectives: The purpose was to test the applicability of the Health Promotion Model to Mexican American workers' use of hearing protection devices. Method: A correlational descriptive design and path analysis were used to determine the relationships between cognitive-perceptual factors, modifying factors and use of hearing protection devices. A questionnaire was completed by a total of 119 workers in three garment manufacturing plants. Interviews were conducted with the occupational health nurse or safety director in each plant to determine the policy regarding hearing protection also. Results: Factors that directly influenced the use of hearing protection devices were a clinical definition of health, benefits of and barriers to use of hearing protection devices, self-efficacy in the use of hearing protection devices and perceived health status (R2 = .25, p < .01). An exploratory analysis allowing a direct relationship of modifying factors with the dependent variable explained additional variance in use of hearing protection devices through the contribution of situational factors (R2 = .55, p < .01). Conclusions: Important factors related to Mexican American workers' use of hearing protection devices were identified to provide direction for nursing interventions. Future research should further test the explanatory capabilities of the Health Promotion Model, explore the importance of situational influences on health behavior, and ensure reliable measures of all model components for this population.
- Ear protective devices
- Mexican Americans
- Pender Health Promotion Model